Today, the idea of the â€œYale Manâ€ inspires disdain. Memes that denigrate Yale men proliferate on Facebook… Some of this outrage is well-deserved: At its worst, Yale masculinity can be sinister â€” indeed, criminal â€” as evidenced by recent allegations about sexual assault at Delta Kappa Epsilon and other fraternities. …
As scholars of gender studies have understood for years, the â€œpatriarchyâ€ harms men as well as women. By setting an impossibly high standard for the elusive, ideal Yale Man, the dominant culture condemns the vast majority of men to fall short, prompting them to act out and hurt others â€” primarily women. …
To be a â€œsuccessfulâ€ Yale Man is to check off a daunting list of boxes. One must be tall, fit and subtly dressed. Outgoing and social, but not loud or crass. Not just funny and intelligent, but effortlessly so. In reality, few live up to the demands of the normative Yale Man, yet his specter lives on as a figment of our cultural imagination, haunting we who fall short.
While women face similar pressures, men probably have fewer ways of conforming to this aesthetic of Yale cool. You can be the idealized boy next door â€” the frat bro or student-athlete, who also happens to be in Phi Beta Kappa. Or you might become a Yale politico â€” Yale Political Union extraordinaire in the streets, policy wonk in the sheets. Or you could be a man of arts and letters â€” think theater, a cappella or The New Journal. Fall outside these tropes, and goodbye social capital. The intense pressure leads Yale men to seek out sites of male bonding, only to find that these, too, disappoint, with their petty cruelties and oversized egos.
I exaggerate, but only slightly. In fact, the vision of the idealized Yale Man has a long cultural history. In 1912, Owen Johnson published his best-selling novel, â€œStover at Yale,â€ which documents the titular characterâ€™s attempts at navigating Yaleâ€™s social hierarchies. Driven by its ladder of fraternities and societies and its emphasis on football, brutal competition characterized Yale at the turn of the 20th century.
That atmosphere took a toll on real-life as well as fictitious Yalies. …
We urgently need to reimagine Yale masculinity. … So how might we create a kinder and more generative masculinity? Instead of focusing on Yale cool as an aesthetic, letâ€™s transform it into an ethic. Rather than fixate on who we are, letâ€™s think about what we can do â€” for ourselves as for others. And letâ€™s tell more varied stories about â€œreal menâ€ at Yale â€” stories of redemption as well as perfection, of struggle as well as triumph, of vulnerability as well as strength.
I expect the reader can easily imagine what I think of people who take courses in “Gender Studies,” who take that kind of contemptible nonsense seriously, and my response to the idea of a “Kinder and More Generative Masculinity.” The latter phrase provokes in my mind the image of a frail, sissified young man sitting on an egg.
The Y chromosome may be a symbol of masculinity, but it is becoming increasingly clear that it is anything but strong and enduring. Although it carries the â€œmaster switchâ€ gene, SRY, that determines whether an embryo will develop as male (XY) or female (XX), it contains very few other genes and is the only chromosome not necessary for life. Women, after all, manage just fine without one.
Whatâ€™s more, the Y chromosome has degenerated rapidly, leaving females with two perfectly normal X chromosomes, but males with an X and a shrivelled Y. If the same rate of degeneration continues, the Y chromosome has just 4.6m years left before it disappears completely. This may sound like a long time, but it isnâ€™t when you consider that life has existed on Earth for 3.5 billion years.
There has emerged a war on masculinity. Why? Because masculine men are harder to control under tyrannical socialism. The modern beta male, on the other hand, craves socialism. This is why the left has branded masculinity as toxic: it stands as a roadblock to their endgame.
Leftists blame, of all things, masculinity for the recent spate of sexual harassment scandals. For eons, masculinity has been considered a natural and even required trait of being male, but it is now apparently the reason for deviancy. Who knew?
The glaring problem with this argument is that the men who are typically being accused of such transgressions are anything but masculine. Sexual harassment is bipartisan; both liberal and conservative men in positions of power seem to harass women with aplomb. But where is this referenced masculinity? Harvey Weinstein? Al Franken? Louis CK? I posit that a consistent theme among most accused harassers is a complete lack of masculinity. I would go so far as to suggest that the lack of masculinity is a contributing factor to this problem.
Most of these accused public figures are modern men â€“ perhaps not quite beta males, but certainly closer to Obama’s now infamous Pajama Boy than they are to John Wayne. Are men who display a lack of masculinity less likely to victimize women? Obviously not. But the left does not let reason or rationality interfere with an opportunity to degrade social decency or further its collectivist agenda.
The feminist hatred for masculinity is only another tool in the toolbox of communism. Masculinity tends to make a man individualistic. Individualistic men are capitalists, not communists. They are men who cherish individual liberty, and they rely on themselves rather than on government. Self-reliance is a four-letter word for leftists, and masculine men are generally self-reliant. Beta males like Pajama Boy rely on government, and such modern men, devoid of any semblance of masculinity, are ideal for leftist indoctrination.
YOU GUYS ARE RUINING MY BEARD FETISH. Ever since I was a little girl, Iâ€™ve loved a man with a beard. To me, they meant strength, power, MANLINESS. Someone who could protect me. Unfortunately, you guys have turned it into a fashion statement. The beard has turned into the padded bra of masculinity. Sure itlooks sexy, but whatcha got under there? Thereâ€™s a whole generation running around looking like lumberjacks, and most of you canâ€™t change a fucking tire.
Robert Krikorian, at NR’s The Corner, warned that weak presidents can provoke US adversaries (even with strong female staffers to take up the slack) and provoked squeals of girlish outrage from Jamison Foser.
One of the reasons Khrushchev gambled on missiles in Cuba is that he perceived JFK as a weak man when they met in Vienna. Conversely, one of the reasons Khomeini released the hostages just as Reagan was taking the oath of office was his â€œRonnie Ray-gunsâ€ reputation (something the air traffic controllers ignored â€” which itself became another lesson for our enemies). Do you think Putin and A-jad and Chavez and the ChiComs are more afraid of Obama now? It was obvious to most of us that Hillary has more, uh, stones than Obama, but to have it confirmed so publicly for less-attentive foreign goons means theyâ€™re that much more likely to try to push us and see how The One responds.
Before you send me any burning bras, the problem is not with women leaders â€” the enemies of the Virgin Queen and the Iron Lady can attest to that. The problem is not even with the president having strong female subordinates. Rather, Obamaâ€™s pusillanimity has been hugely magnified by the contrast with the women directing his foreign policy and the fact that they nagged him to attack Libya until he gave in. Maybe itâ€™s unfair and there shouldnâ€™t be any difference from having a male secretary of state do the same thing, but there is.
So we have the worst situation of all. Instead of a strong leader resisting calls for an unjustified military action â€” or even a strong leader resolutely supporting the military action â€” we have a timorous and irresolute leader reluctantly caving in to the demands of his staff. We are in for a heap of trouble.
But even Robert Dreyfuss, at the Nation, (who denounces them for it) agrees that the resolve to act in the Libyan crisis was supplied by several women in the Administration, not by Barack Obama.
Weâ€™d like to think that women in power would somehow be less pro-war, but in the Obama administration at least it appears that the bellicosity is worst among Hillary Clinton, Susan Rice and Samantha Power. All three are liberal interventionists, and all three seem to believe that when the United States exercises military force it has some profound, moral, life-saving character to it. Far from it. Unless President Obamaâ€™s better instincts manage to reign in his warrior womenâ€”and happily, thereâ€™s a chance of thatâ€”the United States could find itself engaged in open war in Libya, and soon. The troika pushed Obama into accepting the demands of neoconservatives, such as Joe Lieberman, John McCain and The Weekly Standard’s Bill Kristol, along with various other liberal interventionists outside the administration, such as John Kerry. The rode roughshod over the realists in the administration
Jezebel’s Irin Carmon categories the discussion under “Emasculation,” and headlines her link collection “The Many Ways To Say “Hillary Stole Obamaâ€™s Balls.”